An Australian Woman said she felt “blessed” after her three-year-old autistic son was found alive drawing muddy water from a stream in an inland piece of land, after a three-day search that shook the country.
Police dispatched a helicopter equipped with thermal cameras but failed to capture the boy in the first hours after he was reported missing, Friday morning at his family’s remote property in the state of New south Wales, 150 km northwest of Sydney.
Rescuers and police, including some on horseback, searched throughout the weekend before finally spotting the boy, AK Elfalak, during a sweep of the area with a helicopter this Monday.
“He is with us, he is safe and well and healthy. That’s what matters,” his mother Kelly Elfalak told television reporters on Tuesday from the family home in Putty town.
“I want to thank everyone, I feel so blessed”, she added.
AJ had some scratches and bruises, said the mother. “Outside of that, it’s perfect,” she added.
The police explained that the density of the land complicated the search for the boy, who was found a few hundred meters from his home.
“The young man was sitting in a small creek and drinking water. The pilot and the crew could see it , New South Wales Police Superintendent Brad Monk told reporters.
Video footage taken from the police helicopter showed the boy sitting in a murky water hole in a creek, using his hands to scoop water to his mouth.
The search for the boy, who according to the police is autistic and does not speak, was the main news in Australia the last days.
“What a relief, I can’t imagine how traumatic this experience was for AJ and his parents,” Prime Minister Scott Morrison said on Twitter.
Melissa Galbraith is the World News reporter for Globe Live Media. She covers all the major events happening around the World. From Europe to Americas, from Asia to Antarctica, Melissa covers it all. Never miss another Major World Event by bookmarking her author page right here.